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An animated green map of Ireland with cartoon houses, round tower, pint of Guinness, Dolmen and castles dotted around the country 6 Day Ancient Ireland Tour Dublin Cork Wicklow Waterford Kilkenny
Vagabond Van

5 Day Vagabond Adventure East Tour

Get Ready for Adventure on an Active 5 Day Tour of Ireland

Relish a 5 day tour of Ireland's Ancient East. Go hiking, biking, canoeing and surfing. Discover the magic of stunning natural scenery on this 5 day active tour. Surprises lie around every corner!

Scale granite mountain ranges and discover scenic river valleys. Feel the warmth of an Irish welcome as you sip craft beer and soak up local culture. It’s all waiting for you in Ireland's Ancient East! Remember to check out our other active 5 day tour of Ireland. Does this tour sound too energetic? Read about our more relaxed Driftwood Tour of the same region.

💚 Our goal is for you to love Ireland as much as we do. Offsetting carbon and building relationships with the communities we visit are just two ways we're striving for responsible travel. Find out more on our sustainability page.

💰 BOOK THIS TOUR FOR ONLY €100 DEPOSIT PER PERSON. Check Out Our New Flexible Booking Terms

Estimated $ USD 2020 Price: $1,476 (based on $1 = €0.85)
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What's Included

All Vagabond tours are flexible. Your 5 Day Vagabond Adventure East Tour is no different.

Unmissable activities are included. Where there are great options, we’ve left the final decision up to you. Feel free to choose your evening meals and lunches. All additional tour options are marked clearly below.

  • An off the beaten track adventure in VagaTron 4x4 tour vehicle
  • The services of a highly-trained and professional VagaGuide tour guide
  • 5 full days on tour
  • 4 nights' accommodation
  • 4 delicious and filling hot Irish breakfasts
  • Most daily activities and visits (see Tour Options below for extras)
  • Entrance fee to Cahir Castle
  • Entrance fee to Hook Head Lighthouse
  • Entrance fee to Dunbrody Famine Ship
  • Passage East Ferry Tickets

All details of prices and suppliers listed here are correct at time of publication. Our suppliers occasionally increase prices for optional tour activities during the touring season. This is a rare occurence. In the unlikely event of a major price increase, we will do our utmost to update you.

Flexible and optional activities on tour
  • Bike Hire Waterford Greenway
    Cycle along a scenic converted railway line.
  • Surf Lesson in Waterford
    Catch some Copper Coast breaks during a coldwater surf session
  • Guided River Canoeing
    Canoe along the Barrow, one of Ireland’s most scenic waterways.
  • Tintern Abbey
    Guided/self-guided tour of medieval monastery site
  • Kilkenny Castle
    Self-guided tour of 12th century Kilkenny Castle.
  • Ros Tapestry
    €8.00/€7.00 Seniors
    Exhibition of large-scale embroidered tapestry depicting Norman history.
  • Kayaking Hook Head
    Discover the Sea Caves and arches during a truly magical experience
Vagabond, Always going that extra mile
Our tour prices do not include flights, travel insurance or Dublin accommodation
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Our Guests Trip Advisor Reviews

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Beautiful views and fascinating history
This was our first group tour, and our first visit to Ireland. The tour exceeded our expectations. There were a lot of wonderful stops, including some with more time to explore - that is obvious by looking at the itinerary. Our tour guide really made the trip special which seemed to be the general consensus amongst our entire group. His knowledge and way of sharing the history both ancient and more recent really set the context around the sites we were visiting.
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Unbelievable Beauty
There aren't sufficient words to describe our tour. My husband, and another couple booked this trip to celebrate both our 20th Anniversaries. IT WAS AMAZING! Though we went at the end of the season which is usually rainy, we had great period of sunshine. The hikes, the history, the landmarks, the accommodations were so good. Our guide MADE our trip. She was knowledgeable, fun, funny, a GREAT storyteller and I felt so safe with her. If you get opportunity to go to Ireland, GO WITH VAGABOND! They are the best!
TripAdvisor RatingView on Trip Advisor
Best way to see Ireland
Everything you read in the reviews is true ! Small group = you move fast as your not waiting for 40 people to load up. Your days are flexible and loaded with fun. - want to stop and see a statue, a grave? No problem. Run into a group of cyclists- no problem, we got out and cheered them along. Off the beaten path = stunning views, epic hikes, no crowds, seeing everyday Ireland in small towns and meeting the lovely Irish people. Best guides = You learn about the life, the land, animals, flora and the history as you move along. Our guide Henry was the best ! I know I read that in these reviews a lot.
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A couple walk with bikes along a moss-covered section of the Waterford Greenway in Ireland
Pedal power on the Waterford Greenway, a scenic converted railway line.
A couple canoe past a multi-arched stone bridge on the River Barrow in Ireland
Canoe along the the river Barrow, one of Ireland’s most scenic waterways
Hiker at the summit of the Spink in Glendalough valley, Ireland
Discover mountain hiking trails in the Wicklow, Slieve Bloom and Comeragh ranges.
A VagaTron Mercedes 4x4 tour vehicle splashes through water in Ireland
Travel in our rugged VagaTron Mercedes 4x4 tour vehicles
Sunset colours and sky on Hook Lighthouse, Ireland
Explore spectacular off the beaten destinations like the Hook Peninsula
Killiane Castle surrounded by trees in Wexford, Ireland
Overnight at characterful 3 and 4 star hotels and boutique accommodation
Group hiking in a forest in Ireland
Stunning natural scenery and surprises lie waiting around every corner!

A hot shower after a mountain hike. A real fire. A pint. We assure you that wherever you stay with us, you’ll love it.

We put great effort into selecting accommodation on Vagabond tours. Your tour will overnight in locally-owned establishments (in some cases for generations). Receive a heartfelt welcome, often from the hoteliers themselves. No hotel chains here!

Border between sections

The Bayview Hotel, Co. Cork

The 4 star Bayview Hotel is a fine manor house nestled on the Cliffside of the beautiful fishing village of Ballycotton. It offers luxurious accommodation and stunning ocean views. Hear the waves crashing as you wake up in the morning in this amazing location. The hotel has lovely gardens, which lead to miles of sandy beaches for you to enjoy.

Exterior of Bayview Hotel with a view of the bay and the fishing boats
Beautiful views from the Bayview Hotel overlooking Ballycotten Bay

The Garryvoe Hotel, Co. Cork

The Garryvoe Hotel is a family owned, indeprendent four star hotel overlooking the idillic views of Ballycotton Bay. The hotel has been lovingly cared for through the generations since it opened as one of the first hotels in East Cork. At the Garryvoe you will find the intimate, friendly and professional service, fresh local food and an incredible view all add up to a memorable experience.

The exterior of the Garryvoe hotel and a view of Ballycotton Bay
The interior of the Garryvoe double room

Killiane Castle Country House, Co. Wexford

Relax into the sumptuous luxury of Killiane Castle Country House and let the outside world just fade away. This 17th-century Country House exudes a relaxed atmosphere amidst its idyllic tranquil surroundings. The adjoining 15th-century Norman castle stands proudly alongside. Ramble down along the Farm Walking Trail through the old beech grove to finish off your day of adventures. A warm welcome awaits you at Killiane Castle.

The exterior and grounds of Killiane Castle and Country House
The interior of a double room in Killiane Castle and Country House

The River Court Hotel, Co. Kilkenny

Right on the banks of the River Nore, in the heart of the medieval city of Kilkenny, this 4-star hotel is perfect for unwinding after a day of kayaking. With magnificent views of the city's 12th-century Kilkenny Castle, The River Court Hotel has a quiet location set in a private courtyard and conveniently situated back from the busy Kilkenny streets. The main shopping areas, theatres, entertainment, tourist attractions and Kilkennys Medieval Mile are all close by right on the hotels doorstep.

The River Court hotel with a view of the river nore

Brooklodge & Macreddin Village, Co. Wicklow

This multi-award winning Brooklodge & Macreddin Village is sure to have exactly what you need to unwind. Ideally located in a picturesque Wicklow Valley, it is the perfect spot for a get away from it all. Country house style and state-of-the-art facilities combine to deliver a unique experience. Relax at The Wells Spa, a designated ‘Resort Spa’. Dine at The Strawberry Tree, Ireland’s first certified Organic restaurant, or La Taverna Armento, a Southern Italian style bistro.

The exterior of Brooklodge & Macreddin Village
The interior of a double room in Brooklodge
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Adventure East 5 Day Tour of Ireland - Highlights

Bike, hike and canoe around the pristine southeast on an active 5 day tour of Ireland from Dublin.

  • Unearth hidden gems in Ireland's Ancient East, a less-visited corner of the Emerald Isle.
  • Dive into adventure options like a guided bike tour, coastal sea kayaking and a coldwater surf session.
  • Discover mountain hiking trails in the Wicklow, Slieve Bloom and Comeragh ranges.
  • Sample Ireland’s famous nightlife and musical culture in Kilkenny and Waterford.
  • Explore spectacular off the beaten destinations like the Hook Peninsula and the picturesque Barrow River Valley.


a group of kayakers exploring a sea cave
Dive into adventure options like a guided bike tour or coastal sea kayaking.
VagaTron Mercedes 4x4 Tour Vehicle splashes through water in Ireland
Board your VagaTron Mercedes 4x4 tour vehicle. Next stop: adventure!

Day 1: Dublin to Cork

Board your VagaTron Mercedes 4x4 tour vehicle in Dublin and head south, to Cork via Laois, Offaly and Tipperary.

  • Hike through the scenic Slieve Bloom Mountains, Ireland's largest state-owned nature reserve.
  • Cross the River Suir to storm medieval Cahir Castle, one of Ireland's largest and best-preserved fortresses.
  • Your lodging tonight is at the Bayview Hotel or the Garryvoe Hotel on the Cork coastline.

The average driving time today is 4 hours.

The exterior of Cahir Castle on the river Suir
Take a self-guided tour of monumental Cahir Castle
Walking trail sign in the Slieve Bloom mountains, Ireland
Hike through the scenic Slieve Bloom mountains

Day 2: Cork to Wexford

Starting on the east Cork coast, meander from the historic town of Dungarvan, in Waterford, into county Wexford.

The average driving time today is 3 hours 30 minutes.

A man and woman walking through the waterford greenway with bikes beside them
Hike or bike the Waterford Greenway, a coastal trailway on a converted railway line
Surfer on a wave in Waterford in Ireland
Refresh your head with a coldwater surf session on the Copper Coast

Day 3: Wexford to Kilkenny

Explore the Three Sisters region, moving from Wexford to Kilkenny via New Ross.

  • Enjoy a guided tour at Hook Lighthouse, the world's oldest operational lighthouse.
  • Discover sea caves and arches during a truly magical sea kayaking experience around Hook Head (Tour Option- €50).
  • Hike forest trails under 200-year-old beech trees around medieval Tintern Abbey. Or explore the monastery ruins itself (Tour Option - €5).
  • Discover the roots of the global Irish diaspora on the Dunbrody Famine Ship, an exact replica of a 19th century vessel.
  • Drop anchor tonight at the Rivercourt Hotel in Kilkenny

The average driving time today is 3 hours.

Hook Lighthouse on Hook Head peninsula bathed in orange and pink sunrise/sunset light in Ireland
Enjoy a coastal hike and guided tour at Hook Lighthouse
Three people out sea kayaking on the hook peninsula
Discover sea caves and arches during a truly magical kayaking experience around Hook Head

Day 4: Kilkenny to Wicklow

Today we meander up the Barrow River Valley from Kilkenny and Carlow, towards the foothills of Wicklow.

  • Hike the scenic River Barrow. Or slip into a canoe to explore this amazing waterway (Tour Option - €35 per person).
  • Alternatively, relax in Kilkenny. Check out Kilkenny Castle as well as the many craft studios, authentic pubs and antique stores.
  • Travel back in time at Rathgall - a Bronze Age stone fort steeped in ancient Irish history.
  • Your hotel tonight is the BrookLodge Hotel in Wicklow, featuring Ireland's first certified organic restaurant.

The average driving time today is 1 hour 30 minutes.

Two people canoe down a weir on the River Barrow in Ireland
Conquer the River Barrow's many weirs by canoe
The exterior of Kilkenny Castle and rose garden
Take a guided tour of Kilkenny Castle

Day 5: Wicklow to Dublin

Explore the Garden County today, traversing the Wicklow Mountains National Park towards Dublin.

  • Follow a path treaded by rebels and soldiers along the mountainous Military Road.
  • Conquer the steep hiking trails above Glendalough, a 6th century monastic site in Wicklow Mountains National Park..
  • Glimpse raptors soaring high above as your Irish adventure descends through scenic countryside to the coast.
  • Disembark your VagaTron back in Dublin between 5-6pm

The average driving time today is 2 hours 30 minutes.

A man hiking high above Glendalough lake
Conquer the steep hiking trails above Glendalough, a 6th century monastic site
Red Kite bird of prey soaring in Ireland
Glimpse raptors soaring high above you in Wicklow
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